Wounding or causing grievous bodily harm with intent are strictly indictable offences which prosecuted in the District Courts of NSW. The offences are under section 33(1) Crimes Act which states:
A person who:
with intent to cause grievous bodily harm to that or any other person is guilty of an offence. Maximum penalty–Imprisonment for 25 years.


A wound is an injury to a person that penetrates both layers of the skin.


Grievous bodily harm includes any permanent or serious disfiguring of a person.
If you have been charged with wounding or causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt:
An offence of specific intent is an offence of which an intention to cause a specific result is an element.


Section 35(2) Crimes Act states:
Reckless grievous bodily harm
A person who:
Maximum penalty—Imprisonment for 10 years


Section 35(4) Crimes Act provides:
Reckless wounding
A person who:
Maximum penalty—Imprisonment for 7 years.
The element of recklessness is made out if at the time of the infliction of the injury (wounding or grievous bodily harm), the accused realised that they may possibly cause actual bodily harm to the other person by their actions, yet they went ahead and acted as they did. Recklessness merely requires that the accused avert to the possibility of actual bodily harm but proceeds with their actions, nevertheless.


Self Defence

An accused acting in self-defence is not criminally responsible for the offence.
An accused carries out the conduct constituting the offence in self-defence if the person believes that the conduct is necessary to:
AND the conduct is a reasonable response in the circumstances as the accused perceives them.


The law recognises that in some cases someone who commits what would otherwise be a crime should be excused for having done so. The law recognises that sometimes people really do not have a choice and their choices have been overborne by a serious threat to either them or their family.
There are three elements which make up the defence of duress.
A person acts under duress, and therefore will not be held to be criminally responsible if that person’s actions were performed:
The above should not be treated as legal advice but general information.